"Episode 6 of #shutinfilmfestival. Lessons in Semaphore (2013) is a fast collaboration with the great and luminous choreographer #taishapaggett and a corner lot in Washington Park Chicago and a neighbourhood kid and frequent visitor to my studio, Malyk. My camera was busted. This was the last time I used my beautiful Vietnam bell+Howell wartime wind-up. I never convinced my fellow residents that the empty lots offered a wild prairie beauty. Fair enough. Because these empty lots also remind us of redlining and anti-black economic operations on fleek in Chicago and all over the country. But this was a small attempt at looking at the way the violence of American racism might, for a moment, be undermined and resisted. Chicago, I miss you. 👐🏾🙋🏿♀️🦋🐞🐝🦜🌱🌾🧩🎥🎞💚🚩💚🟥🟦🚩 - Cauleen Smith's Instagram 30 March 2020
“Lessons in Semaphore.” IFFR, January 18, 2019
In this 16mm film shot on the south side of Chicago, choreographer Taisha Paggett dances with two flags in an attempt to communicate in semaphore. She meets a young boy, Malik, who appears to speak her language. The film plays out like a celebration of dialogue, despite the silence that surrounds it.